Creating Innovative Laboratory Systems For Engineering & Technical Education

Turbine Technologies News

University of Queensland, Australia Readies WindLab from Turbine Technologies

Posted in: Wind Turbine Lab


The University of Queensland, Australia has taken delivery of a Turbine Technologies, Ltd. WindLab system. This educational device is being readied for student use and the college released the following information:

"The University of Queensland has recently acquired a WindLab wind turbine by Turbine Technologies which has been part funded by the Australian Power Institute (API). The aim of this purchase is to provide undergraduate and postgraduate power engineers with a practical method of learning and understanding the fundamentals of how wind turbines operate and the principals of wind power generation. This system will provide power engineering students with a platform to develop, test and simulate a wind turbine and its associated generator under variable wind conditions. The WindLab wind turbine is designed to be a viable, hands-on tool for renewable wind energy education. The system will be used for experimentation and research along with studies into aerodynamics, structures and electrical engineering [1]. To ensure that UQ engineers get the full educational and practical benefits from this system, six hours of laboratory modules have been developed for use in existing and future BE, ME and BE/ME courses that cover wind power generation. The laboratory modules have been developed as three separate practical sessions that would each take approximately two hours to complete. The format and structure of each module is consistent with other API practical and laboratory modules developed by UQ and each module contains a worksheet, step through guide and sample solutions. The first eight sections of this report summarise some background theory and fundamentals on wind power, pitch control, the WindLab system and how to calibrate relevant meters as well as pre-lab procedures. The first laboratory module is designed to familiarise the user with all necessary safety procedures and the basic operational overview of the WindLab system. It runs through the wind turbines control parameters and how to sample and save data through the data acquisition system and the program installed on the supplied laptop. The second module is designed to explore the turbines functionality, reveal the underlying operating principles and wind power’s potential benefits. The worksheet provides real world scenarios and instructs the user to gather experimental data using this system to answer questions as well as requiring theoretical knowledge to justify the user’s decisions. The third two hour module aims to provide an insight into the customisable features of the WindLab system. In particular, the effect of blade pitch positioning is investigated where the adjustable blades are configured at different angles and the turbine performance for each configuration is analysed. The effect of blade pitch on system performance of both the model wind turbine and a full scale application is examined, providing insight into a current issue and focus within the wind industry".

Turbine Technologies welcomes the University of Queensland to our ever growing operator group and look forward to their success in hands-on student education with their new WindLab system.